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Zhuozo

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PostedJun 17, 2011 10:18 pm

Archer Builds?

Warning, this is going to be a tl;dr post. Might also contain some ranting. Skip to bottom for summary if you want to.

So, I was thinking about making an archer, but I don't want to waste time leveling one up if I don't know what I'm doing or think it will be a waste of time... And I can't seem to find any help as to exactly how effective archers are at doing certain things with certain builds, only generalizations. Which, really, are about as useful as saying that a mage should probably use magic attacks, and not melee attacks.

Anyways, the thing I was most interested in is builds. I tried before to make an archer, and everyone I asked (I asked other archers in-game) said 'full luc build'. So I tried it. And it was terrible. I got to level 20 before I got totally discouraged and gave up. My attacks did nearly no damage, and that was when they actually hit (which wasn't often cause I had no dex). I've considered doing a str/dex build, but am hesitant because even though full luc seemed not good to me, it must be useful later on since only one archer I asked said to do anything but full luc...

So anyways, what is a good build? I have no clue how criticals work (do they always hit, or do you need dex to hit and luc to crit on a hit?), other than knowing luc increases my chance to do a critical. I know for a fact that full luc is terrible at early levels, so I was thinking maybe doing a str/dex or str/dex/luc build. If I really have to, I can invest in a stat reset later on to go full luc or whatever, but I want to be sure that my money is well-spent.

Which brings me to the next issue: is it even worth it? I haven't done another archer since my failed full-luc attempt, so what is damage like if you actually get into it? I know with pretty much every other toon I've made (tried everything but mages in hm, my nm was a priest), I could solo grind easily on greens/yellows, and sometimes on oranges without having to rely on potions or resting to heal after each kill. Can archers pull this off with the right build? I'm not talking about taking on reds or purples one at a time, kiting for a while, and pausing after each kill, cause honestly that is a very slow grind strategy. I'm talking about greens and yellows, one after another, only a few hits to kill and without having to pause to heal for at least a few kills in a row.

Possibly unrelated: I'm working on a few other toons as well. I don't play very often, and am trying to work on all equally until I can choose one or two to really get into seriously. Until I choose one that I really like and I can stick with until higher levels (50+), I'm not sinking any significant amount of gold into armor. You can assume I will buy better armor and lapis it later on if I really like my archer, but I want a toon that will do fine with just npc armor until then. If archers really rely on better-than-npc armor to be even remotely good, then I don't want to make one...

tl;dr: I want to do solo PvE. I want to do this with an archer. I don't want to have to constantly spend a lot of gold on awesome gear with lapises, because I cannot yet fund that. Can archers pull this off, and if so with what build? Will a stat reset be necessary?
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Minasdefender

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PostedJun 18, 2011 2:44 am
TLDR Outline First
DEX? You need it
DAMAGE? Based mostly on strength but Archers gain more damage from luck than other classes so use it!
CRIT RATE? Get 475 luck ASAP
CRIT DAMAGE? With 475 luck you'll hit okay but some day get some strength too.
PRACTICAL ADVICE? Archers are much better at higher levels/modes/gear budgets. Lapis map 2 free dreads from quest with minimum lapis and level 30+ should go smoother.

DEX?
You need dex to hit no matter what. So figure 1-2 dex per level or some dex lapis at the minimum. You need to hit to crit. You also need to hit to hit with some of your skills that do things besides just normal crit damage... like the Damage over Times archers get.
If you're normal mode maybe 1-2 dex is all you can afford to invest per level. If you're HM/UM, maybe go 2 per level to start. If you have resources, lapis in a lot of dexterity. It also adds evasion but at low levels especially its a struggle to hit and hit hard as you've noticed. Trying to be a dodging ninja isn't too important until you've got some great gear.

DAMAGE
Now lets break down where damage come from. I'm only talking physical attacks here so don't use my advice for a mage unless you're making a melee mage, which is 100% sure to suck.

All classes get 1.3 damage per point of strength, 0 per luck, and .2 damage per point of dex when meleeing. This includes you if you pull out a sword.

Archers (with a bow/crossbow) get 1 damage per strength, .3 luck per luck, and .2 per dex.
This shows us archers are better at using luck than other classes. Your pure luck archer hit for a low amount when not critting, but a pure luck other class would hit even less hard.

Note that for all players strength adds more damage than luck. So why use luck at all? See below...


CRIT RATE (the reason to add luck)
Every class gets some crit chance for every point of luck. At low levels against low luck targets it's generally agreed on that 5 luck is 1% crit rate. Most people think you also get 5% base. So to get 95% (max) crit rate, get 475 as soon as possible. Once you have 475 luck (and okay dex) you'll be a happy camper. Since you get a better benefit from luck than all other classes, you definately want 475 minimum luck on an archer. I can think of 3 exceptions...
1) Low level grinding. Your crit rate will suck no matter what at level 3. You found this out the hard way. Thus, a lot of people suggest do str/dex at low levels, then around level 32 restat to luck. This is actually a great idea if you can afford to link level 32 dread gear semi-decent and if you can afford a stat reset. If you're poor... you just have to get there the hard way.
2) Nos build. Let a KO nos do the critting for you. You'll hit like a truck when nos'd but hit less hard than every other class when not nos'd.
3) Sword using. Why you'd pick an archer to use a sword? There's a few exceptions like when a fighter uses "Eagle Eye" against you but in general, you should use a sword .00001% of the time or less so this reason is put in for completeness rather than practicality.
Also, you may want more than 475 luck some day because luck does add damage to critical hits (but not as much as strength usually but not always). Also, at high levels, some mobs and especially big mean other players might have enough luck to have some crit resistance. With 475 luck against a well geared 70 UM, you might crit half the time at best so you will want more someday.

CRIT DAMAGE
Yeah, a crit hits 1.5 times as much as a normal non crit, plus it adds a bit of damage based on your luck. So once you have 475 luck, even if you normally hit like a limp noodle, your crits should still hit ok. Granted if you have 475 luck and 0 strength you will never hit like a semi-truck on steroids. At 70 UM though when you can afford lots of many stats, you'll hit hard and from long range.

PRACTICAL ADVICE
An archer is very gear dependent. You need 3 stats to be effective. At low levels, you definately need dex and can ignore luck while you grind. But you should restat at higher levels. If you can't afford a restat stone, start luck/dex and it'll be a pain until you're higher level.

If you're still normal mode, consider unlocking HM or UM as fast as possible if you like the archer concept. For your NM to level fastest solo make a full rec priest with the frost barrier skill. Let mobs kill themselves on you. Simple, possibly boring, but effective... and will make your final archer a better archer. If you get bored, your NM can always make a decent healer.


About gear and your play style:
You seem like a loan wolf type player which isn't a bad thing. As a loan wolf you probably won't ever be rich. Most people can't kill bosses that make you rich solo. However, you might get enjoyment out of gearing yourself up yourself!
I'm going to assume you make a NM 40 rec priest and a baby HM archer as I suggested above. Use your 40 NM to farm a bunch of level 3 lapis from D-water. Level your HM from 1-20 in a slow crappy way. It'll suck. Sorry. Then at 20, go to Pharos dungeon in the 20-30 PVP area. There's no PVP here, don't worry. Farm a bunch of level 2 lapis. Next, on map 2, there's 4 quests that give you full dread unicorn armor (level 29-32). Put a level 3/2 luck and 3/2 dex in every piece. Voila! Now you're critting almost all the time and accurately at level 32 and you did it yourself. 32 and on should be way more enjoyable of a grind up until 55ish, when tougher mobs begin. But that's a story for a whole new post.

Hope this helps. Good luck!

Zhuozo

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PostedJun 18, 2011 5:01 am
Well, I'm not sure how much a stat reset costs if I buy with gold, but I'm guessing a lot. If so, I might make a different hm toon and work with that, and make an archer later on, cause in order to pull off an archer I will probably need a restat rune...

I'm probably gonna focus on doing some minor funding with my nm toon so I can get a different hm to lvl 40+ and use it to farm instead of my nm. Then I will try out an archer, with a restat rune. Cause trying to get to level 30 solo will be a pain, and trying to get someone else to plvl me ALL THE WAY to 30 seems burdensome...

xybolt

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PostedJun 18, 2011 1:01 pm

Re: Archer Builds?

Zhuozo wrote:
So, I was thinking about making an archer, but I don't want to waste time leveling one up if I don't know what I'm doing or think it will be a waste of time... And I can't seem to find any help as to exactly how effective archers are at doing certain things with certain builds, only generalizations. Which, really, are about as useful as saying that a mage should probably use magic attacks, and not melee attacks.  


archer/hunter is a complex class. i've been able to understand it after playing with my UM archer for a long period of time. With my background knowledge, i understand what a good archer needs.


Zhuozo wrote:
Anyways, the thing I was most interested in is builds. I tried before to make an archer, and everyone I asked (I asked other archers in-game) said 'full luc build'. So I tried it. And it was terrible. I got to level 20 before I got totally discouraged and gave up. My attacks did nearly no damage, and that was when they actually hit (which wasn't often cause I had no dex). I've considered doing a str/dex build, but am hesitant because even though full luc seemed not good to me, it must be useful later on since only one archer I asked said to do anything but full luc...  


i really don't understand that - even if they're archers - they're advising you to pick full LUC. it's not a secret that without DEX, the pure LUC build is really worthless.
your intent is really good, to start with STR/DEX. it improves your PvE progress at early levels because the LUC build works only after when you have reached more then 300 LUC.

when people is asking for a build ingame, there are 2 good options ( ofc there are some "special" ways, but it costs money Razz )

i advise either of the next 2

-1- ) a 5STR / 2 DEX ( 7STR if you're UM ) build till lvl30 and then a restat to 2 DEX rest LUC.
with that, go get the AoL dread set quests. try to lapis this set with mainly STR/DEX.

-2- ) a 5 LUC 2 DEX ( or 7 LUC or 5LUC - 2 STR ( but it's a long PvE ) ). with this, you don't need a restat stone, but you need at least have a cheap lvl3/4 assault lapis and some craft lapis in low lvl gear ( llv3/4 ) you can get 1-15 set if you want.
but i did this build with assault lapis and some lvl3 craft in my 1-15 gear which is for NPC Razz
just assault lapis in bow llv13 (lvl3 assault) - 25 (lvl3/4 assault (if heroic+ lvl3 craft)) - 37 ( it depends of the slots, but same as 25) .

with the dread quest gear, try to lapis is balanced with a focus on STR, and DEX/LUC



Zhuozo wrote:
So anyways, what is a good build? I have no clue how criticals work (do they always hit, or do you need dex to hit and luc to crit on a hit?), other than knowing luc increases my chance to do a critical. I know for a fact that full luc is terrible at early levels, so I was thinking maybe doing a str/dex or str/dex/luc build. If I really have to, I can invest in a stat reset later on to go full luc or whatever, but I want to be sure that my money is well-spent.  


actually try to aim for a 3 stat build. especially after lvl30, it's a necessary. at lvl54, you should have got 500 LUC, 300 DEX and 200+ STR. ( if you can get higher stats, then it's better for you, mine is higher then it ofc Razz )

if you can get a 3 stat build with the dread gears, then you are fine


Zhuozo wrote:
Which brings me to the next issue: is it even worth it? I haven't done another archer since my failed full-luc attempt, so what is damage like if you actually get into it? I know with pretty much every other toon I've made (tried everything but mages in hm, my nm was a priest), I could solo grind easily on greens/yellows, and sometimes on oranges without having to rely on potions or resting to heal after each kill. Can archers pull this off with the right build? I'm not talking about taking on reds or purples one at a time, kiting for a while, and pausing after each kill, cause honestly that is a very slow grind strategy. I'm talking about greens and yellows, one after another, only a few hits to kill and without having to pause to heal for at least a few kills in a row.  


as said, the archer/hunter class isn't only a complex class, but also costly. as you can see in the above input, you need to have time and effort to get lapis and linking it.
yes, you can pull oranges with a right build. i can speak that from my experience.
But it's better to focus only on yellow if you're solo'ing. at this, you have a better XP/time ratio then killing oranges.

my system is the next :
DPS + pierce + sustain shot a mob, then aim 2nd mob, VSS ( viper sting shot, comes at lvl37 i think ) , tranq shot, RS ( rapid shot ). by this you have 2 kills per 1 "kill round".
deadly poison shot, aka DPS, is an extremely powerful skill for PvE ( although it doesn't work on bosses and DD mobs ) that is able to kill a mob in the time that you can kill the same mob with your damage skills.


about playing that class, well it's actually based on your taste. Do you like to be on ranged distance and killing the mobs while moving a lot ?

Zhuozo wrote:
Possibly unrelated: I'm working on a few other toons as well. I don't play very often, and am trying to work on all equally until I can choose one or two to really get into seriously. Until I choose one that I really like and I can stick with until higher levels (50+), I'm not sinking any significant amount of gold into armor. You can assume I will buy better armor and lapis it later on if I really like my archer, but I want a toon that will do fine with just npc armor until then. If archers really rely on better-than-npc armor to be even remotely good, then I don't want to make one...  


with a lvl50+ toon, you can get lvl3/4 lapis without a lot issues. these lapis has a higher chance to link too ofc. so, actually there is not a big issue if you can farm a bit.

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Lanceknightmare

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PostedJun 18, 2011 1:27 pm
One small note I would like to make about farming lapis to link. You will have to regularly sell the lapis you don't want to the market. The chance of getting enough of the type of lapis you actually need in drops. Is slim to none and requires days after days. In order to get enough lapis of the same type. In order to properly lapis your gear like you want.

The practice of linking level 2 and 3 Lapis in today's game. While practical in theory. Is not as effective as it once was in Episode 3. Linking level 2 and 3 lapis used to be a solidly recommended start for a character. Because, level 2 lapis were more openly traded. Now, there are far less level 2 Lapis on the market. Some days, you will not even find any for sale. I suspect level 3 Lapis are only still regularly seen on the market. Because, they drop in an area with Dark Mage Stones, Magic Leather etc.

You might want to consider just linking Dexterity/Luck/Strength Level 3 Lapis. Then, filling in the remaining slot with Sp, Mana and Hit-point Level 3's. A few extra hundred Mana/Spirit Points. Will always be more effective than +7 to a since statistic. Regardless of the class you are playing. It allows a grinder to use more skills. Therefore, lowering the amount of time spent grinding.

A stupid and just plain ignorant counter argument I commonly here, "Just use Orange Statistics for Mana/Spirit Points". While, this is solid in practice. The reality is that a number of people. Intend to actually fill in there Mana/Spirit Points with Orange Statistics. Though, they never do. Because, Hit-points are a highly prized statistic. Basically, I recommend using a few Mana level 3's in your dreads. Then, Spirit Points for the remaining slots.

Zhuozo

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PostedJun 18, 2011 11:57 pm
Umm... I know how to farm for and link lapis. I know a lot about this game. I just needed to know how to use that knowledge to make a good archer, since I've never made one. All I was really looking for is comments on people's experience with building/using archers. I don't need a full walkthrough like someone who had just started playing would need...

Also, as to the oddness of the archers saying "full luc", I asked months ago. Probably late September. So the game could have been updated in a way that would change how stats work for archers.

And my questions regarding the effectiveness of an archer with npc armor still aren't answered. Yes, I know that in order to be the best I can, I'm gonna have to invest a lot of gold in armor. I get it. But until I can invest that gold, will the archer be fine with npc armor?

MerlinMcTav

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PostedJun 19, 2011 1:40 am
Zhuozo wrote:
Umm... I know how to farm for and link lapis. I know a lot about this game. I just needed to know how to use that knowledge to make a good archer, since I've never made one. All I was really looking for is comments on people's experience with building/using archers. I don't need a full walkthrough like someone who had just started playing would need...

Also, as to the oddness of the archers saying "full luc", I asked months ago. Probably late September. So the game could have been updated in a way that would change how stats work for archers.

And my questions regarding the effectiveness of an archer with npc armor still aren't answered. Yes, I know that in order to be the best I can, I'm gonna have to invest a lot of gold in armor. I get it. But until I can invest that gold, will the archer be fine with npc armor?  
The game hasn't been updated, our knowledge has.
The "full luck" build is actually an extremely old outdated idea that for some reason is still perpetuated today.
It was proven to be incorrect a long time ago, but some people still cling to it.
You need dex, you need luck (lots of it), you need strength.
Xybolt has already given a good answer here.

RIP Kizzd

Zhuozo

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PostedJun 19, 2011 2:16 am
Okay, so I know what I need to do for a build now. But is it worth it? I don't want to go through with making this if the archer is only going to be marginally better than originally. I want to make an archer cause it will be something new, but if archers are way underpowered then I don't want to bother...

xybolt

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PostedJun 19, 2011 2:44 am
Zhuozo wrote:
Okay, so I know what I need to do for a build now. But is it worth it? I don't want to go through with making this if the archer is only going to be marginally better than originally. I want to make an archer cause it will be something new, but if archers are way underpowered then I don't want to bother...  


the issue at archer/hunter is, that it is not powerful if you doesn't have access to strong lapis like lvl5 lapis. the gap between a person which has lvl3/4 in gear, an another which is fully linked with lvl6 is based on stats, not so big, but based on the "power" it became a very high difference.

me myself has a double more damage then an another archer which was at same lvl, but in lvl4/duals only while i'm lvl6/5 linked. that's because i can use the extra stats ( my stats - his stats ) into STR which gives me a more damage output.

you can go with lvl4/duals and some lvl5's but sometimes you can meet archers which is very stronger then you, just with some extra stats in STR.

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Zhuozo

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PostedJun 19, 2011 2:58 pm
Yeah, I get all that, but how good is an archer WITH JUST NPC GEAR? No lapis or dread gear or anything. Just npc-bought armor. How good is an archer like that? If I get good gear from a random drop, that is different, but I will not be purchasing anything other than npc armor. Will an archer be any good at all like that, or do they NEED the better gear to be worthwhile? This is what I want to know, because I cannot fund ANYTHING, and I would rather work on something I know can do without good gear other than something that needs good gear to work...
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